Category: World

Tormented into a guilty plea? Experts denounce US “miscarriage of justice” in Butina case

Tormented into a guilty plea? Experts denounce US “miscarriage of justice” in Butina case

Maria Butina’s only crime is that she is Russian, legal analysts told RT, attacking the US justice system for keeping her in solitary confinement until she admitted guilt to at least one of the many charges brought against her. “This is an utter and total miscarriage of justice,” retired CIA agent and whistleblower John Kiriakou told RT after Butina pleaded guilty to the charge of failing to register with the Justice Department as an agent of the Russian government. “You can see clearly, this is not about justice, this is not about criminal activity. This is about making a political point. This is about identifying…

Read More »
Turkey to enter Syria’s Manbij if Kurdish militias fail to leave area, Erdogan warns

Turkey to enter Syria’s Manbij if Kurdish militias fail to leave area, Erdogan warns

© Turkish Defence Ministry via AP ANKARA, December 14. /TASS/. Turkish troops will enter Syria’s Manbij if Kurdish units fail to leave the city, Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said at an Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) event in Istanbul on Friday. “We are determined to ensure stability and security east of the Euphrates River [in Syria]. If Manbij is not cleared [of Kurdish units], then we will enter the city,” he said. According to the Turkish president, “the United States is trying to distract Turkey by delaying the implementation of the Manbij roadmap.” “The US seeks to weaken our resolve to fight against terrorists,” Erdogan…

Read More »
Butina’s guilty plea predictable, says father

Butina’s guilty plea predictable, says father

US District Court for the District of Columbia © Boris Makarov/TASS BARNAUL, December 14. /TASS/. Attorneys for Maria Butina, arrested in the US, adopted the right strategy, and the outcome of yesterday’s hearing was expected, her father, Valery Butin, told TASS. On Thursday, Butina pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the law governing foreign agents operating in the US. She also agreed to cooperate with federal prosecutors. The US District Court for the District of Columbia accepted Butina’s guilty plea and set the date for the next hearing on her case for February 12. The date for the court’s ruling was not assigned…

Read More »
Turkey sees no reason for new summit with Russia on Idlib

Turkey sees no reason for new summit with Russia on Idlib

© AP Photo BAKU, December 14. /TASS/. Turkey believes that the current situation near Syria’s Idlib does not need top-level discussion with Russia, Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Friday. “We don’t need a summit, but we continue cooperation with each other at other levels, so the work continues,” he said, answering a TASS question on when the second top-level meeting on the situation near Idlib between Russia and Turkey may take place, which Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan earlier talked about. “We don’t need a new summit, as there is no any extraordinary situation.” “Our militaries, the intelligence and foreign ministers are working…

Read More »
Russia’s UN envoy calls OPCW probe into Syria chemical attacks ‘propaganda stunt’

Russia’s UN envoy calls OPCW probe into Syria chemical attacks ‘propaganda stunt’

Russia’s UN envoy, Vasily Nebenzya © AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews UN, December 14. /TASS/. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)’s approach to the investigation into the purported use of chemical weapons in Syria is a “propaganda stunt,” Russia’s UN envoy, Vasily Nebenzya, has said. “Gentlemen, all this is so clumsy,” he told his colleagues during the UN Security Council session, commenting on the organization’s probe into the latest alleged chlorine attack in Aleppo. “Your propaganda stunt is more than obvious.” “When a staged chemical attack was carried out in Eastern Ghouta [in April], the Syrian government was blamed for it,” he continued. “The results of…

Read More »
Donbass republics warn OSCE about Kiev’s possible offensive

Donbass republics warn OSCE about Kiev’s possible offensive

VIENNA, December 14. /TASS/. Representatives of the self-proclaimed people’s republics of Donetsk and Lugansk (DPR and LPR) have informed OSCE officials in Ukraine about the Kiev government’s planned offensive that may take place later this month, Russia’s OSCE envoy Alexander Lukashevich said on Thursday. “During the Contact Group session on December 4, representatives of certain districts of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions expressed their concern about the situation along the line of contact. A letter was handed over to the head of the [OSCE Special Monitoring Mission] SMM in Ukraine and coordinator of the security subgroup Ambassador Ertugrul Apakan, as well as the special representative…

Read More »
Russia abstains from Security Council vote on aid to Syria bypassing Damascus

Russia abstains from Security Council vote on aid to Syria bypassing Damascus

UN, December 14. /TASS/. Russia and China on Thursday abstained from the UN Security Council vote to extend the delivery of humanitarian cargo to Syria from the territory of neighboring states bypassing Damascus. The resolution was supported by 13 member states. Russia and China abstained. In line with the document, the so-called trans-border operations will be extended for one year and no permission from Syria’s official government is required for them. The document demands that all sides provide free, unimpeded and stable access to humanitarian convoys of UN and its partners to any region and any group of population. Russia’s UN envoy Vasily Nebenzya said…

Read More »
Russia’s UN envoy calls OPCW probe into Syria chemical attacks ‘propaganda trick’

Russia’s UN envoy calls OPCW probe into Syria chemical attacks ‘propaganda trick’

Russia’s UN envoy, Vasily Nebenzya © AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews UN, December 14. /TASS/. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)’s approach to the investigation into the purported use of chemical weapons in Syria is a “propaganda trick,” Russia’s UN envoy, Vasily Nebenzya, has said. “Gentlemen, all this is so clumsy,” he told his colleagues during the UN Security Council session, commenting on the organization’s probe into the latest alleged chlorine attack in Aleppo. “Your propaganda trick is more than obvious.” “When a staged chemical attack was carried out in Eastern Ghouta [in April], the Syrian government was blamed for it,” he continued. “The results…

Read More »
Russia’s UN envoy sees no alternative to Syria constitutional committee

Russia’s UN envoy sees no alternative to Syria constitutional committee

UN, December 14. /TASS/. Russia sees no alternative to the plan to create the Syrian constitutional committee, Russia’s UN envoy Vasily Nebenzya told the UN Security Council session. “We would like to stress: there is still no viable alternative to the constitutional committee,” he said. ‘We call upon everyone to engage in a collective effort to establish an all-encompassing political process under the UN aegis, which is critically important for Syria.” “We still assume that all parameters of the committee’s work should be approved by Syrians themselves. Only in this case it will be efficient and viable,” the Russian diplomat added. The decision to set…

Read More »
Americans recruited online for secret missions in Ukraine — Russia’s OSCE envoy

Americans recruited online for secret missions in Ukraine — Russia’s OSCE envoy

©  Sergei Konkov/TASS VIENNA, December 14. /TASS/. Russia noticed that US citizens were being recruited for special missions in Ukraine via the MissionEssential company, Russia’s OSCE envoy, Alexander Lukashevich, told a session of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s permanent council in Vienna. “We noted that an advertisement posted on the LinkedIn portal announces that US citizens with the knowledge of the Ukrainian language are being recruited via the MissionEssential company for covert US operations in Ukraine,” Lukashevich said. He said the candidates are required to have skills of secret contact with the local population, to be trained for operations in a zone…

Read More »
Over 2,000 ceasefire violations registered in Ukraine in past week – Russian OSCE envoy

Over 2,000 ceasefire violations registered in Ukraine in past week – Russian OSCE envoy

VIENNA, December 14. /TASS/. More than 2,000 ceasefire violations were registered in East Ukraine in the past week, and the Kiev government forces are responsible for most of them, Russia’s OSCE envoy Alexander Lukashevich has said. “Analysis of reports by the Special Monitoring Misison (SMM) of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) demonstrates that tensions have intensified,” Lukashevich told a session of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Permanent Council in Vienna on Thursday evening. “In the past week, more than 2,000 ceasefire violations were documented. In most cases, the direction of fire suggests that the Ukrainian Armed Forces…

Read More »
EU summit rules out renegotiation of Brexit deal in final statement

EU summit rules out renegotiation of Brexit deal in final statement

BRUSSELS, December 14. /TASS/. The resumption of talks on an agreement of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union (Brexit) is impossible, but Brussels is set to establish close relations with London after the process is completed, says the final EU summit statement on Brexit. “The Union stands by this agreement and intends to proceed with its ratification. It is not open for renegotiation,” the statement reads. The document also reiterates that the EU “wishes to establish as close as possible a partnership with the United Kingdom in the future.” “It [the European Council] stands ready to embark on preparations immediately after signature of…

Read More »
Self-proclaimed Ukrainian republics warn OSCE about Kiev’s possible offensive

Self-proclaimed Ukrainian republics warn OSCE about Kiev’s possible offensive

VIENNA, December 14. /TASS/. Representatives of the self-proclaimed people’s republics of Donetsk and Lugansk (DPR and LPR) have informed OSCE officials in Ukraine about the Kiev government’s planned offensive that may take place later this month, Russia’s OSCE envoy Alexander Lukashevich said on Thursday. “During the Contact Group session on December 4, representatives of certain districts of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions expressed their concern about the situation along the line of contact. A letter was handed over to the head of the [OSCE Special Monitoring Mission] SMM in Ukraine and coordinator of the security subgroup Ambassador Ertugrul Apakan, as well as the special representative…

Read More »
New York’s incoming attorney general unveils ‘huge’ plan to investigate Trump and his family

New York’s incoming attorney general unveils ‘huge’ plan to investigate Trump and his family

The New York attorney general-elect has unveiled plans to launch a large-scale investigation into President Donald Trump. Letitia James, who will replace Barbara Underwood on January 1, 2019, vowed to probe not only Trump but also his family and any of his associates who might have violated the law. Her plans include an investigation over the meeting between a Russian official and three senior members of the Trump campaign-Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort-held at Trump Tower in June 2016.

Read More »
Most of EU nations oppose new anti-Russian sanctions over Kerch Strait incident — source

Most of EU nations oppose new anti-Russian sanctions over Kerch Strait incident — source

© AP Photo/Alastair Grant BRUSSELS, December 13. /TASS/. Most of the European Union member nations are against further sanctions against Russia over the Kerch Strait incident, a European source said on Thursday on the sidelines of a EU summit in Brussels. According to the source, the majority of EU countries believe it would be counterproductive to impose more sanctions over the situation around the Kerch Strait. These countries, in his words, stand for efforts to deescalate the situation and find a solution to the issue of inspections of ships, including European ones, which take too much time. In violation of the rules of passage via Russia’s…

Read More »
SOTT FOCUS: Revisiting Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s Warnings to The West

SOTT FOCUS: Revisiting Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s Warnings to The West

Comment: December 11th 2018 marked the birth of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, the great Russian thinker, writer and activist. The Russian author thought it was no coincidence that Soviet Russia shared certain common problems with the West, for he saw socialism and liberalism as kindred ideologies With tensions between America and Russia running high, it is worth reconsidering a figure who once cast a long shadow across both lands: Nobel Prize-winning author Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. As a writer, Solzhenitsyn acquired renown through works such as One Day In The Life of Ivan Denisovitch and Gulag Archipelago, whereby he not only exposed the follies, pretensions, and crimes of Marxist-Leninism…

Read More »
“I am not ready”: How Putin rejected Yeltsin’s suggestion to run for President

“I am not ready”: How Putin rejected Yeltsin’s suggestion to run for President

When offered support from then-President Yeltsin for a bid to lead Russia, Vladimir Putin said ‘No,’ much to the surprise of his boss. The anecdote was told by the Russian president to school students choosing their path in life. Putin recalled how he was offered a big career boost that eventually made him president of Russia during a forum on career opportunities for teenagers about to graduate from school. When asked how he chose the profession of the president, he assured them he did not. The story came with a moral. Putin said that, although he had plenty of experience as an official and “a…

Read More »
Reports say Russia has established new base in Syria near US-occupied Al-Tanaf

Reports say Russia has established new base in Syria near US-occupied Al-Tanaf

Russian forces have established a base in the area of Zaza right on the 55km de-escalation zone line around the US-led coalition base in the town of al-Tanaf on the Syrian-Iraqi border, Syrian pro-government activists revealed on December 12. A source, who is familiar with the situation, told SouthFront that several advanced air-defense systems and other military equipment were deployed in the new Russian base. More weapons, including heavy rocket launchers, are expected to arrive in the base in the upcoming few days.

Read More »
Russia to support dialogue between Azerbaijan, Armenia, says foreign minister

Russia to support dialogue between Azerbaijan, Armenia, says foreign minister

BAKU, December 13. /TASS/. Russia will facilitate dialogue between Baku and Yerevan in order to help the sides find a resolution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated on Thursday during a meeting with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. “We want to continue to support open dialogue between Baku and Yerevan on the regulation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,” the Russian top diplomat said. Lavrov added that he is interested in hearing Azerbaijan’s position on the progress already achieved, and stressed that Moscow would do everything possible to facilitate an agreement between both countries. Russian Foreign Minister also congratulated Aliyev on Azerbaijan’s successful chairmanship…

Read More »
Alleged ‘Russian agent’ Butina finally worn down: Enters guilty plea to engaging in conspiracy against US

Alleged ‘Russian agent’ Butina finally worn down: Enters guilty plea to engaging in conspiracy against US

Maria Butina, the 30-year-old Russian woman arrested and charged earlier this year with acting as an unregistered agent of the Russian government in the U.S., pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court after previously entering a plea of not guilty. Butina admitted in the District Court for the District of Columbia that she and an American, known in court documents as “U.S. Person 1,” conspired with and acted under the direction of a Russian government official to establish unofficial lines of communications with people able to influence U.S. politics leading up to the 2016 presidential election. Assistant U.S. Attorney Erik Kenerson said Butina sought to use…

Read More »
Alleged ‘Russian agent’ finally worn down: Butina enters guilty plea to ‘engaging in conspiracy against US’

Alleged ‘Russian agent’ finally worn down: Butina enters guilty plea to ‘engaging in conspiracy against US’

Maria Butina, the 30-year-old Russian woman arrested and charged earlier this year with acting as an unregistered agent of the Russian government in the U.S., pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court after previously entering a plea of not guilty. Butina admitted in the District Court for the District of Columbia that she and an American, known in court documents as “U.S. Person 1,” conspired with and acted under the direction of a Russian government official to establish unofficial lines of communications with people able to influence U.S. politics leading up to the 2016 presidential election. Assistant U.S. Attorney Erik Kenerson said Butina sought to use…

Read More »
Austrian police question Russian biathlon team on suspicion of doping violations

Austrian police question Russian biathlon team on suspicion of doping violations

Austrian police officers have visited the Russian biathlon team’s training camp in Hochfilzen to question athletes and coaches over alleged doping violations which supposedly took place two years ago. Russian biathletes are in Austria for the Biathlon World Cup, and talked to police regarding suspected doping manipulations during the 2017 World Championship, which was hosted in Hochfilzen. Dmitry Guberniev, a prominent Russian TV commentator and biathlon pundit, posted the news on Instagram, where he also published a list of the team members suspected by the Austrian authorities.

Read More »
Colombian hypocrisy: Hernandez criticizes Russian-Venezuelan military relations despite being US imperialist outpost

Colombian hypocrisy: Hernandez criticizes Russian-Venezuelan military relations despite being US imperialist outpost

For Cuban professor Roberto Henandez, Venezuela has the right to defend itself and it is hypocritical that Colombia is expressing concern about the joint military maneuvers between Venezuela and Russia. Hernandez’s analysis comes in response to accusations made by Colombia on Wednesday through Colombian President Iván Duque. “[…] It is ironic that Colombia is concerned about joint Russian-Venezuelan maneuvers and the presence of Russian airplanes in the neighboring country, when in Colombia seven US military bases are maintained that are a real threat to the entire region,” the retired professor at the University of Havana said.

Read More »
Moscow: Kiev preparing provocation in rebellious east ‘within days’

Moscow: Kiev preparing provocation in rebellious east ‘within days’

The Ukrainian government is reportedly preparing a provocation in the east, which will be used to launch a major offensive operation against rebel forces, Moscow said. It may happen in days and would affect the presidential poll. The Ukrainian military has amassed troops in Kiev-controlled eastern parts of the country, the spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday citing reports from international monitors. Moscow believes it to be a sign of a looming escalation between the Ukrainian government and rebel forces. “There are reports that within several days Kiev will stage an armed provocation on the contact line,” Maria Zakharova said, referring to the…

Read More »
No Trump-Putin meeting while Russia holds Ukrainian ships, says Bolton

No Trump-Putin meeting while Russia holds Ukrainian ships, says Bolton

WASHINGTON, December 13. /TASS/. The US administration thinks that the next meeting between Trump and Putin will not take place while Moscow still holds Ukrainian military vessels detained in the Kerch Strait, US National Security Advisor John Bolton told reporters on Thursday. “I don’t see circumstances in the foreseeable future where such a meeting could take place until the ships and the crews are released,” Bolton stated. Kerch Strait incident On November 27, Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, endorsed President Pyotr Poroshenko’s decree on imposing a 30-day martial law from November 28 in the Vinnitsa, Lugansk, Nikolayevsk, Odessa, Sumy, Kharkov, Chernigov, Donetsk, Zaporozhye and Kherson…

Read More »
Pro-Russian socialist party set to win parliamentary elections in Moldova, says poll

Pro-Russian socialist party set to win parliamentary elections in Moldova, says poll

CHISINAU, December 13. /TASS/. The Party of Socialists of the Republic of Moldova, which supports the current pro-Russian president Igor Dodon, is set to get the majority of votes during the upcoming parliamentary elections in Moldova, a poll held by Moldova’s National Association of Sociologists and Demographists informs. The election will take place on February 24, 2019. The poll held in December shows that if the elections were to take place on Sunday, the Party of Socialists of the Republic of Moldova would get 48.4% of the vote. The ruling Democratic Party of Moldova would take second place with 17.9% of the vote, followed by…

Read More »
Austrian prosecutor’s office not confirming intent to interrogate Russian biathletes

Austrian prosecutor’s office not confirming intent to interrogate Russian biathletes

VIENNA, December 13. /TASS/. The Austrian prosecutor’s office does not confirm the reports stating that an interrogation of Russian biathletes will take place on Thursday in Hochfilzen, the Central Public Prosecutor’s Office for Combating Economic Crimes and Corruption informed TASS. “I cannot confirm this. Currently, the investigation continues,” a representative of the Austrian public prosecutor’s office said in response to the question about whether an interrogation of Russian athletes and specialists will take place in Austria on Thursday. Russian Ambassador to Austria Dmitry Lyubinsky told TASS earlier that the Russian diplomatic mission would monitor the situation closely. Russian TV presenter Dmitry Guberniev earlier said that the…

Read More »
Russia remains main supplier of coal to Ukraine as coming bitter frost forces Kiev to boost imports

Russia remains main supplier of coal to Ukraine as coming bitter frost forces Kiev to boost imports

Ukraine won’t buy Russian gas to keep warm, but two-thirds of its coal imports still come from Russia, according to the country’s State Fiscal Service. Ukraine’s purchases of hard coal grew to nearly $2.7 billion from January through November 2018, marking a year-on-year surge of more than 10 percent, according to official government data. The fiscal office noted that neighboring Russia accounted for nearly 62 percent of the country’s total imports of anthracite. Russia exported $1.67 billion worth of coal, followed by the US, whose anthracite exports reached almost 30 percent of the Ukrainian market or $806.3 million. Canada is the third biggest supplier of…

Read More »
Google’s Pichai reveals the extent of Russian meddling: $4700 on Google ads

Google’s Pichai reveals the extent of Russian meddling: $4700 on Google ads

The goal of ‘Russian collusion’ hearings is not the truth – the Democrats are still trying to explain the people who gave a lot of money to Hillary Clinton why she lost, Lionel told RT. The CEO of Google, Sundar Pichai, gave some specific numbers on alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US election as he was questioned by the US House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. “Does Google now know the full extent to which its online platforms were exploited by Russian actors in the election two years ago?” New York Democratic Rep. Jerry Nadler asked Pichai. The tech giant’s CEO responded: “We undertook a…

Read More »
FSB arrests 7 suspected supports of ISIS and al-Qaeda in Russia

FSB arrests 7 suspected supports of ISIS and al-Qaeda in Russia

Russian authorities say they have detained seven people suspected of financially supporting two extremist organizations in the Middle East. Russia’s Investigative Committee said on December 13 that the suspects had been apprehended in and around the Moscow region and the three North Caucasus regions of Chechnya, Daghestan, and Ingushetia. They were suspected of sending at least 38 million rubles ($570,000) to militants of the Islamic State (IS) group and the Al-Nusra Front – Al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate until 2016 — since 2010. The Federal Security Service (FSB) said the seven suspects were detained following a joint operation by the FSB, the Investigative Committee, and the National…

Read More »